It’s been a big week for Cuba and a number of Republicans are trying to piggyback on the good news with their own form of discontent. Enter Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, two Batista Republicans if there ever were.
The embargo policies of the United States toward Cuba have been a failure. Originally intended to undermine the governing authority and encourage dissidents in the nation to rise against their dictator, they did not achieve their objective. Much the opposite, actually, as Cuba has seen economic growth since the sanctions were implemented in the 1962.
Even further, the actions of the United States may very well have killed average Cubans. In 1992, an action passed that put further restrictions on the flow of medical supplies into Cuba. This action resulted in restricted availability and may very well have been responsible for the outbreak of many diseases on the island.
So, President Obama observed the situation, witnessed the lack of progress and decided that the past 50 years of policy had failed. It was time for change.
It’s a policy that makes sense. It’s a policy that deserves a chance to better the lives of those it touches. Obama, can’t lift the embargo. Only Congress can do that, but Rubio and Cruz are both vehemently against improving the relationship of the United States and Cuba. Instead, they would seem to prefer a more barbarous and brutal time. It’s fitting considering Rubio opposed the knowledge brought forth by the CIA torture reports. He supports keeping torture in the dark. He supports leaving Cuba in the dark as well.
Batista Republicans like Cruz and Rubio are exactly the cause of such backward policies as the embargo on Cuba. If it was up to them, they’d have us continuing to bang our heads on the wall, complaining that we still have a headache.
A dissident blogger from Cuba summed up the feeling of many Cubans about the current state of Cuba, to a New York Times reporter in 2008:
“We live turned away from the sea because it does not connect us, it encloses us. There is no movement on it. People are not allowed to buy boats because if they had boats, they would go to Florida. We are left, as one of our poets put it, with the unhappy circumstance of water at every turn.”
It is time to turn to the sea and restore our relationship with our counterparts on the isle.